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  • Thermal Shock/Scalding from Non-compensating Shower Valves

    When you have the opportunity to observe the condition, how many of you recommend to your customers replacing older shower valves which do not automatically compensate for changes in system pressure and/or temperature?

    Also, what is the attitude of your code enforcement dept with regard to this hazard?

    What's in your code and how aggressive are they in enforcing it?

    And lastly, what's your opinion on making recommendations to customers to replace older valves. Do you see it as predatory sales tactic so you don't bring it up or as preventive/safety-related and looking out for the welfare of your clientèle?

    Some reading for you that might change your mind;
    http://www.asse-plumbing.org/ScaldHazards.pdf
    Last edited by Bob D.; 10-31-2010, 07:15 AM. Reason: fixed a typo
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  • #2
    Re: Thermal Shock/Scalding from Non-compensating Shower Valves

    bob, reading 14 pages on the dangers of low flow shower heads burns more than any shower i've ever taken.

    there is no code out here mandating updating older shower valves. now if you do a repipe and don't mess with the old valve, it's still legal. if you mess with it, it needs to be update with the anti-scald valve or a form of an anti-scald device.

    it's not just low flow shower heads that pose this problem, but i've seen it on hand held shower heads too.

    we were required to use pressure or temperature balance valves back in th the early 90's for residential and years earlier in retirement/ nursing homes.

    biggest problem with these valves are they're expensive and they do go bad with the balancing or thermostatic cartridge.

    unless a house has extremely old gal piping, pressure differentials are not a real issue.

    i've done more repairs on pressure/ temperature valves that don't work, than had complaints from customers with concerns of temperature fluctuations on older valves.

    i need a cold shower now

    rick.
    phoebe it is

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Thermal Shock/Scalding from Non-compensating Shower Valves

      Rick is right.

      If someone has a pre-antiscald shower valve I almost never recommend they replace the valve. If they want to update their fixtures that's their call.

      I also try and recommend people keep their old 3.5 gallon tank toilets whenever possible. I tell them it's better for their sewers.

      In the end though it's all about what the customer wants.

      Here's a shower setup I installed Friday evening where they won't have to worry about not getting enough water. Dual showerheads, and a 9.5 GPM thermostatic valve. (Starting to put the Propress to work)
      Attached Files
      Time flies like an arrow.

      Fruit flies like a banana.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Thermal Shock/Scalding from Non-compensating Shower Valves

        Mixing valve at the water heater.

        J.C.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Thermal Shock/Scalding from Non-compensating Shower Valves

          Originally posted by geno gardner View Post
          Rick is right.

          If someone has a pre-antiscald shower valve I almost never recommend they replace the valve. If they want to update their fixtures that's their call.

          I also try and recommend people keep their old 3.5 gallon tank toilets whenever possible. I tell them it's better for their sewers.

          In the end though it's all about what the customer wants.

          Here's a shower setup I installed Friday evening where they won't have to worry about not getting enough water. Dual showerheads, and a 9.5 GPM thermostatic valve. (Starting to put the Propress to work)
          What the heck goes in that inlet?

          Thanks.

          J.C.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Thermal Shock/Scalding from Non-compensating Shower Valves

            i don't think that a mixing/ tempering valve on a water heater is an acceptable alternative.

            rick.
            phoebe it is

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Thermal Shock/Scalding from Non-compensating Shower Valves

              Originally posted by PLUMBER RICK View Post
              i don't think that a mixing/ tempering valve on a water heater is an acceptable alternative.

              rick.
              Check.

              Thanks.


              J.C.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Thermal Shock/Scalding from Non-compensating Shower Valves

                Originally posted by JCsPlumbing View Post
                What the heck goes in that inlet?

                Thanks.

                J.C.
                JC

                The valve is a HansGrohe Thermobalance 1 valve. It's been discontinued so I got a great deal on it for the customer at half off my normal cost! It's designed to supply one fixture. In this case it's actually set to fill a whirlpool, and the shower heads. So you plug the shower port and install a twin ell on the tub fill outlet. Otherwise we might get water coming out of the showerheads when we're filling the tub at this gpm rate.
                Attached Files
                Time flies like an arrow.

                Fruit flies like a banana.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Thermal Shock/Scalding from Non-compensating Shower Valves

                  Originally posted by geno gardner View Post
                  JC

                  The valve is a HansGrohe Thermobalance 1 valve. It's been discontinued so I got a great deal on it for the customer at half off my normal cost! It's designed to supply one fixture. In this case it's actually set to fill a whirlpool, and the shower heads. So you plug the shower port and install a twin ell on the tub fill outlet. Otherwise we might get water coming out of the showerheads when we're filling the tub at this gpm rate.
                  No I mean the Tee on the left. Seems to be in the middle of the shower.

                  Thanks.


                  J.C.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Thermal Shock/Scalding from Non-compensating Shower Valves

                    my guess is an old vent connection.

                    rick.
                    phoebe it is

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Thermal Shock/Scalding from Non-compensating Shower Valves

                      Yes, it does look venty. I think my eyes fool me on the depth as it looks like it is the same depth into the shower as the tile guard.

                      Back on subject for the IPC area:

                      424.3 Last sentence:

                      Scald preventative valves are not required in dwelling units with individual water heaters set at 120 degrees F. (49 degrees C.)

                      J.C.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Thermal Shock/Scalding from Non-compensating Shower Valves

                        Originally posted by JCsPlumbing View Post
                        No I mean the Tee on the left. Seems to be in the middle of the shower.

                        Thanks.


                        J.C.
                        Rick's correct. that's an old lavatory vent, that I'm going to use for the whirlpool tub vent. I'm connecting the vent last to prevent accidental burning when I was water piping. The vent was serendipitous as there was no plumbing visible in the room.
                        Time flies like an arrow.

                        Fruit flies like a banana.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Thermal Shock/Scalding from Non-compensating Shower Valves

                          Thanks Geno. I've also installed some HansGrohe. Works well and the customers have been very satisfied.


                          J.C.

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